Instead of growth at all costs, a new economic model allows us to thrive while saving the planet….
“We cannot hope to address our predicament without a new worldview. We cannot use the models that caused our crises to solve them. We need to reframe the problem. This is what the most inspiring book published so far this year has done – Doughnut Economics: Seven Ways to Think Like a 21st-Century Economist by Kate Raworth of Oxford University’s Environmental Change Institute. Like all the best ideas, her doughnut model seems so simple and obvious that you wonder why you didn’t think of it yourself.
“The diagram consists of two rings. The inner ring of the doughnut represents a sufficiency of the resources we need to lead a good life: food, clean water, housing, sanitation, energy, education, healthcare, democracy. Anyone living within that ring, in the hole in the middle of the doughnut, is in a state of deprivation. The outer ring of the doughnut consists of the Earth’s environmental limits, beyond which we inflict dangerous levels of climate change, ozone depletion, water pollution, loss of species and other assaults on the living world.
“The area between the two rings – the doughnut itself – is the “ecologically safe and socially just space” in which humanity should strive to live. The purpose of economics should be to help us enter that space and stay there.
“I see her as the John Maynard Keynes of the 21st century: by reframing the economy, she allows us to change our view of who we are, where we stand, and what we want to be.
“Now we need to turn her ideas into policy. Read her book, then demand that those who wield power start working towards its objectives: human prosperity within a thriving living world.”
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Image: This model ‘allows us to see the state in which we now find ourselves’. Source: Kate Raworth and Christian Guthier/The Lancet Planetary Health